Mixed or average reviews - based on 34 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. Nov 11, 2013
    It’s an affectionately crafted homage to the first game, retroactively building on the grim story and Ayn Rand-ian themes, galvanising them with a fresh perspective whilst simultaneously tying Rapture more wholly into the Columbian narrative. It’s intelligent, indulgent and nostalgic in equal measure, left dangling on a transfixing narrative hook. It’s everything we love about BioShock, condensed.
  2. Nov 11, 2013
    Burial at Sea is a great ticket to go back to Rapture.
  3. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Dec 28, 2013
    Short but generous trip into the underwater city of Rapture with all the perks we know from Infinite. This DLC benefits from an attractive setting and slower paced action. [Issue#237]
  4. Nov 12, 2013
    It successfully combines all the best elements from Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite into a satisfying package, and it should be pointed out that level-wise nothing has been reused from either game (unlike the superb Minerva’s Den, which was great but didn’t have much new).
  5. Nov 12, 2013
    After completing the first episode of this Bioshock Infinite: Burial at Sea, it clearly appears that mixing Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite universes was a very good idea indeed, and maybe the best reason for a solo DLC. Going through Rapture is a true joy, and the meeting with Elizabeth as a pin-up is great. The gameplay, the art direction and the scenario are still very interesting. The only drawback are the two hours of play sold for 15€. You should go for the Season Pack!
  6. Nov 12, 2013
    The first episode of Burial at Sea provided over three hours of really exciting gameplay, but the original BioShock Infinite is still superior in that matter. And even though this DLC lacked a shocking ending, I really cannot wait to see what Irrational Games will show us in the second episode.
  7. Nov 12, 2013
    Granted, gameplay-wise it's just more of the same in different drapes, and it is kind of short as well. But yet again, Irrational manages to surprise you in a manner that's worth the entry fee alone. But you can't shake the feeling that, ultimately, this DLC will be judged by how its second episode will fill in the gaps that this episode's narrative so tantalizingly leaves.
  8. Nov 11, 2013
    Instead of re-using all of the same assets from Infinite, the team recreated Rapture and found a way to meld successful elements from several games in the series. On the other hand, the additions are minimal at best, leaving players to go through the same motions with a different backdrop. For a world that invites infinite possibilities, I was hoping for less familiarity.
  9. Nov 22, 2013
    Burial at Sea is potentially the best DLC of the year. Rapture has been beautifully brought to life, which has you reaching for you PrintScreen button multiple times throughout playing. The story is also brilliantly told, but the content has been split in two. This makes it a relatively short experience, and players will have to deal with that until they can get their hands on part 2.
  10. Nov 18, 2013
    A wasted chance to get back to rapture and create a new, beautiful game experience. Overall the story is too poorly narrated apart for the awesome cliffhanger at the end and the variety of gameplay situations isn't that great. Rapture itself and the new mature Elizabeth are probably the best aspects of this first chapter of the DLC, but with less than 3 hours of actual gameplay the overall rating of the game isn't what we expected to see.
  11. Nov 27, 2013
    As much as I wanted to go back to Rapture, Burial at Sea is short on story and simplistic in the missions available. It is still good to see some familiar sights being powered by the Unreal Engine 3. Hopefully, the second part of Burial at Sea can help tie up a few things and improve upon the first.
  12. Nov 12, 2013
    Burial at Sea, Episode One is good but not essential - the only piece of BioShock story content you could say that about.
  13. Nov 11, 2013
    Burial at Sea is a worthy return to Rapture, but by the end you’ll wish you could’ve spent more time absorbing the sights and sounds of the city’s unspoiled areas. The grand tourism of the game’s opening versus the constant combat in the rest of the DLC creates a disconnect that makes both halves feel underdeveloped. Hopefully episode two will mend the tear of Burial at Sea’s two disparate parts.
  14. Nov 11, 2013
    The wax-figure-like NPCs and mostly uneventful story, however, dampen a lot of the fun. It’s possible that once both parts of the two-episode Burial at Sea series are out, the story issues will evaporate. That’s just not the case right now.
  15. Dec 28, 2013
    A promising start? A rather cautious one. The return to Rapture evades déjà vu feelings, but it doesn't deliver more than a spark of curiosity for its fans.
  16. Dec 13, 2013
    As much I enjoyed seeing Rapture rendered by BioShock Infinite’s engine, Burial at Sea offered nothing new. In fact, it is nothing more but a re-tread, a 2-hour long fan service for the most loyal followers.
  17. Nov 27, 2013
    You might have been to the city before, but in Burial at Sea, it remains as alluring a creation as it ever was.
  18. Nov 21, 2013
    While the combination of frustratingly underdeveloped combat and a short length weigh the experience down, there’s definitely enough worth seeing here, at least from a visual and narrative standpoint.
  19. Nov 18, 2013
    The story is stunning, as we’ve come to expect, but it doesn’t quite scale the heights of the main game’s campaign.
  20. Nov 11, 2013
    It's a gorgeous, haunting two-hour tour of a world I can never get enough of, and if you're willing to judge Burial at Sea solely as virtual tourism, it's beyond reproach.
  21. Nov 11, 2013
    Practically oozing fan service from every pore, Burial at Sea is both as glorious and as imperfect as Rapture itself.
  22. Nov 11, 2013
    Burial At Sea tells an interesting tale with plenty of twists, but it doesn't have enough substance on the gameplay side of things to back it up.
  23. Nov 11, 2013
    Though Burial at Sea Episode 1 may be a short vignette next to Infinite’s novel, it’s still one you aren’t likely to put down for the brief time it lasts -- and it’s priced accordingly at $15.
  24. Nov 11, 2013
    This first DLC for BioShock Infinite keeps its promises: the return to Rapture is absolutely great for the fans... Too bad it takes less than two hours to finish... At $15, it's quite expensive, especially as you will soon want to pay again for the second episode. You should opt now for the Season Pass.
  25. Nov 11, 2013
    Part One of Burial at Sea is predicated on so many constants and variables that it will undoubtedly prove divisive. It feels all too brief, even as half of a two-part whole, but it delivers a rich storyline that builds to a suitably stunning climax.
  26. Nov 13, 2013
    BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea Episode 1 is an excellent expansion in its fundamentals. It offers a new location, a completely new story and new things to discover. Especially returning to Rapture is e pleasant experience. But then, after ninety minutes, your presented with an ending.
  27. Nov 11, 2013
    I wasn't too impressed by Burial at Sea Episode One, mostly because it just doesn't add a whole lot to the overall franchise outside of the last 30 seconds, and it's simply not compelling enough. While it's quite possible that Episode Two will tie everything together in a neat bow and blow us all away, Irrational Games has yet to make a legitimate case for a return to Rapture.
  28. Dec 2, 2013
    Burial at Sea – Episode One’s most welcoming addition is seeing Rapture in a state of normality. Given the circumstances we saw the underwater city in previous games; this is actually really exciting to see. But the problem is the game is far too short to make the player care enough.
  29. Nov 24, 2013
    A criminally short opening chapter that nonetheless offers a glimpse of Rapture at its opulent heights. The noir intentions are dispensed too soon, so the Booker/Elizabeth relationship and familiar combat have to see Burial at Sea through to its disturbing, perplexing climax.
  30. Nov 14, 2013
    Solidly OK. In the end, it’s much more of what we have come to expect from BioShock Infinite, awesome pieces of story broken up by uninteresting sections of combat. It’s not a reimagining of the series. It’s not a grand departure that examines BioShock’s past. It’s really not much more than some more BioShock Infinite with a Rapture coat of paint slapped over it.
  31. Nov 11, 2013
    Burial at Sea has a real pacing problem, stemming from the very literal segregation of its narrative and combat sections. It makes you finish your meat before your can start on your vegetables, where the metaphorical meat is the talking and the vegetables are the shooting.
  32. PC PowerPlay
    Dec 30, 2013
    The high price and lack of polish make this one to avoid for now. For art-deco die-hards only. [Jan 2014, p.93]
  33. Nov 13, 2013
    Burial at Sea is a DLC package that trades on the fan love for Rapture and little else, with nothing new to add to that place — and what’s more, it feels a bit lazy and a bit messy. Maybe it’s time this undersea city was left buried, finally.
  34. Nov 11, 2013
    Burial at Sea seems a prime example of the tail wagging the dog, and the result is an adventure with fantastic sights and sounds that don't come together in a meaningful way.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 476 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 54 out of 93
  2. Negative: 13 out of 93
  1. Nov 12, 2013
    Short for a $15 game, but then again, it's Bioshock. It's not about the length of the game, it's about the quality.

    I would rather have a
    Short for a $15 game, but then again, it's Bioshock. It's not about the length of the game, it's about the quality.

    I would rather have a quality A+, polished game, than a long and unfinished one.

    This is definitely worth the purchuse
    Full Review »
  2. Nov 12, 2013
    I see that Irrational's devs and advertisers are already doing their stuff, as usual waiting for user scoring to unlock to praise their DLCI see that Irrational's devs and advertisers are already doing their stuff, as usual waiting for user scoring to unlock to praise their DLC from their mediocre "Game of the Year", that "perfection", that "master-piece after which you won't play anything else, I swear, just BUY IT and you'll see".... Not on my watch! Full Review »
  3. Nov 19, 2013
    Absolutely dreadful and lazy. They promise Rapture and try to force Columbia into it, using the same items as before just calling SALTS EveAbsolutely dreadful and lazy. They promise Rapture and try to force Columbia into it, using the same items as before just calling SALTS Eve now. There are no real splicers in the game, the splicers bear few deformities, some not at all, and rather than appearing as people who were once members of the city, they are scavengers. The entire style of Rapture is absolutely ruined and is not the same in the least bit. It defies canon also mostly taking place in a sunken part of the city, but for a piece of the city to be sunk it would be cut off from Arcadia providing all of the oxygen, therefore would not be functioning. Sander Cohen is brought back and his style is ruined and for some odd reason has something to do with Little Sisters when he would never be in charge of such a thing. Suchong makes several audio diaries of which do not talk about plasmids, so that is out of place for his recordings. They over advertise a new Plasmid that is actually just like a level 3 Frost Blast. A new weapon is added, the Radar Range which is ripped from early designs of the Xcom game and is a bit overpowered. The tears and such are back which should have no place in Rapture, Andrew Ryan and Frank Fontaine do not even have any recordings, there is barely anything of the two in the game, and for some odd reason there are sky hooks in Rapture and even a few rails. Rapture is dead, they have just killed the once beautiful city of Andrew Ryan. If you liked Bioshock Infinite get it, if you actually loved real Bioshock and loved Rapture you will be furious. Full Review »